Alert: You have been exposed!
With the ongoing pandemic crisis for COVID-19, app magnates – Google and Apple are now on a venture to release a coronavirus tracing application, to be released this mid of May. The said app will be for Android and Apple users that will use some similar code that is usable for cross devices connection compatibility using Bluetooth technology.
The said project is a collaboration to help the Health Authority to locate immediate possible people that were in-contact recently to a person that has been diagnosed-positive with the virus. In this action, they can send out a notification to the specific individual together with the next instruction for that individual to follow to mitigate further spread of the virus.
The app will use Bluetooth low energy (BLE) beacons to connect onto another mobile device of the person they got in contact. The app will store information about the mobile identifier for a specified period. Once the owner of the particular mobile been diagnosed with the virus, he can turn in his phone to the health officer. Then the authorized data company will extract the information of the mobile identifier it has recorded. After the information has been extracted, the Health Authority will now send out the notification to the other individuals so they can be aware of their current exposure. For this to be possible, the cellphone owner must install the coronavirus tracing application on their devices and should agree to the data privacy of the app.
Despite the app pure intention to help Health Authorities to be able to narrow down people of the virus carrier to lessen its spread. Cybercrime Solutions and researchers still question the app’s protection for identity theft prevention. Be it known that sensitive personal information such as the health status of a person can be compromised because of this action – as said by Cybersecurity expert. If the data extracted will fall to the hands of any fraudster, the information can be utilized for malicious attacks, given that for this plan to work, many people must install and use the app, thus, exposing the risk for their identity to be jeopardized.
Developers of the firms mentioned above highly noted the danger that the app can pose to many people even after the crises have subsided. They said that they will ensure that these factors of transparency, privacy, and consent are in their top priority in creating the large-scale contact tracing app.
Over-all, the need for such abrupt and enhanced technology is badly needed for this time of chaos. However, be in mind that while we work to mitigate the virus’s impact on the world’s health, we should also think of other possibilities of the aftermath. We must weigh addressing the people’s needs and, more importantly – the security for good health and data privacy.